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Holcomb-Faye Leads Pirates Past Marines

From Staff and ECU Media Relations Reports

GREENVILLE, N.C. — East Carolina lost a big early lead, then had to scramble from behind at the end to gain an 89-84 victory over the U.S. Marine Corps in its exhibition opener Monday night.

Junior point guard Travis Holcomb-Faye scored four of his game-high 21 points in the final 1:08 to help the Pirates salvage the win.

ECU led by as many as 21 points in the first half, but found itself behind by a point with 1:27 to play. Holcomb-Faye’s layup with 1:08 remaining and two free throws with 26 seconds left gave the Pirates and 87-84 lead.

The Marine Corps team missed a three-point attempt that would have tied the game and senior guard Brandon Hawkins rebounded, passing the length of the court to sophomore forward Erroyl Bing, who dunked for the final margin.

Despite watching his team let its early lead slip away, ECU head coach Bill Herrion made note of the positives inherent in ultimately prevailing.

“It was really important that our team found a way to win,” he said. “Exhibition games are meant to be won, but it’s also a trial run. I give our kids a lot of credit for persevering and gutting this game out.”

Holcomb-Faye was one of four Pirates to reach double figures. Sophomore Jonathan Moore scored 15 points in his ECU debut on 6-of-12 shooting, including 3-of-6 from behind the arc. Bing finished with 13 points and seven rebounds, while Hawkins added 11 points and senior Kenyatta Brown pulled down nine rebounds.

Kelvin Hamilton led the Marines with 15 points, while Chavis Nipple and Jelani Nix added 13 points each.

The Pirates converted 20-of-24 free throw attempts and won the rebounding war, 39-37.

East Carolina wraps up exhibition play Saturday night against Nike Elite at Williams Arena at Minges Coliseum. Tip off is set for 7:30 p.m.

The Pirates open regular season play on November 14 against Rutgers, of the Big East Conference, in the first round of the BCA Invitational at N.C. State's home facility, the Entertainment and Sports Arena in Raleigh.

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02/23/2007 01:35:05 PM

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